Sported, the charity that supports the largest network of grassroots sports groups in the UK, is delighted to announce that Rory Best, former captain of the Ireland national rugby union team, is officially joining the organisation as an ambassador.
Rory is the perfect choice for this role; he is not only an inspirational role model for young people attending grassroots sports groups in his native Northern Ireland and across the UK but is a strong advocate for the important role sports groups plays in communities. He is also very vocal about his support for the work Sported is rolling out to support both group leaders and young people with the increase in mental health issues. Rory joins Tottenham Hotspur defender, Eric Dier, who became a Sported ambassador at the end of last year.
Rory Best, Sported ambassador, said: “I am passionate about the fantastic work that Sported does to support the enormous number of grassroots sports groups in their network right across the United Kingdom. I am particularly passionate about Sported’s work in mental health and disability inclusion. We have known for a long time the important role sport plays in young people’s lives- keeping them fit, busy, connected and happy. With the pandemic, we have seen young people experience life without the activity, community and support that grassroots sports groups provide, and that has really underlined the significance of the role these groups play both in the life of young people but also in communities as a whole.
I am thrilled to play my part in supporting Sported in keeping the groups afloat, so that they can continue providing the amazing safe spaces for young people of all walks of life to keep active.”
Nicola Walker, CEO Sported said: “We are over-the-moon to have Rory join the Sported family. He is a great advocate for the power of community sport in helping to address and change social issues. He has already been to visit several of the wonderful groups in our network – including TAMHI which is a mental health charity based in South Belfast, Northern Ireland that works with sports clubs and groups. He is an inspirational sportsman in his own right and we are excited to see how he can help support us on our mission to ensure that every young person has the same opportunity to fulfil their potential.”
Sported is the largest network of community sports groups in the UK and is made up of over 2,600 groups right across the country who all use sport and physical activity to help disadvantaged young people build confidence, gain skills and get their lives on track. Sported’s role is to provide those groups with services and support to help them survive and thrive.
The community sports groups in the Sported network are deeply rooted within their communities and led by highly committed, passionate local people who often give up their time voluntarily to run initiatives that help young people from their community to succeed.
To find out more about Sported, visit www.sported.org.uk Twitter: @sported_UK Instagram: sporteduk or Facebook: @Sported